Alas, it is not: it is the launch of what Sunny Hundal modesty terms his "super-blog": Liberal Conspiracy.
Y'see, the Left-o-sphere has been feeling somewhat persecuted of late, not least by their own side—both by blogs and by the appalling behaviour and performance of the government which they elected time after time.
Admittedly, many of the more decent ones will have voted for NuLabour as the least worst option—just one of the many reasons that I would caution the Right against doing so with the Tories—but it doesn't alter the fact that the "liberal-Left" have been having a bit of a hard time of it.
Still, there are some impressive names on the Liberal Conspiracy roster: Chicken Yoghurt and Robert Sharp are quite simply two of the finest prose writers on the blogosphere, for all that I almost always disagree with him; Chris Dillow—the man of no fixed beliefs—has been churning out some excellent work on economics and managerialism for years; Garry Smith was once a regular stop before he became totally obsessed with Iraq; and I have worked with Unity—possessor of one of the blogosphere's finest analytical minds—on a number of issues, behind the scenes.
But, you see, I have a problem with this whole "liberal-Left" issue: to me, the terms are near incompatible. Many of us have long argued that the terms Left and Right are effectively meaningless, and that the actual fight is between those who are statist—believing in redistribution of wealth, state economic controls, heavy regulation of both business terms and personal habits—and those who are free-market libertarians—those who believe that markets, and minimal interference by the state in business and personal concerns, provide the answers to the problems that we face.
One of the reasons that the statists have been taking a bit of a beating is because we have a fundamentally statist government in the form of NuLabour. Not only have NuLabour demonstrably failed in all the important milestones that they set for themselves—health, education, social mobility—but they have made significant inroads into personal liberties too.
Thus the statist bloggers—or those who appear to be calling themselves the liberal Left—find themselves in something of a bind: not only do they find themselves fighting against an incumbent government who is naturally inclined their way, but that government is imposing many restrictions on civil liberties that these bloggers (rightly) disagree with.
Further, many of them have also found that those policies that they do agree with—which mainly consist of stealing more money off private citizens and pouring it into the public services and into measures designed to increase social mobility—have been employed by the government and simply haven't worked.
Thus, many of the liberal Left bloggers have found themselves—slightly embarrassingly, although probably more productively for all of us—aligned with Tories and libertarians over civil liberties issues.
And on the subject of public services and social mobility, they find that their backs are against the wall, for the money has been poured into those areas over the last decade and yet the services are barely better and social mobility is no different. This makes them easy targets for the libertarians—or classical liberals—who can point to the figures showing the failure of their chosen champions, and most of those decent statist bloggers are honest enough to know that a decade is more than long enough to have shown some improvement: bleating about needing more time simply won't wash any more.
In fact, those same bloggers know that they are guilty of keeping these people in power. It seems appropriate today that I should quote from V's speech.
Really, it's not good enough, is it? And it's no good blaming the drop in work standards upon the bad management either...
... though, to be sure, the management is very bad. In fact, let us not mince words... The management is terrible.
We've had a string of embezzlers, frauds, liars and lunatics making a string of catastrophic decisions. This is plain fact.
But who elected them?
It was you! You who appointed these people! You who gave them the power to make your decisions for you.
It is ironic that V For Vendetta, which was intended as a critique on the Thatcher government, should apply so well to NuLabour—the film made that very obvious.
And it is futile for statist bloggers to point out that the Tories are just as bad, or that NuLabour are only bad because they copied the Tories: that simply plays into the hands of the radical small-state libertarians (amongst whom I count myself and many other better bloggers) who point out that this is precisely why the state should run almost nothing at all and should have little or no power.
Every way that they turn, the liberal Left find themselves harried and spiked intellectually: not because their ideas are too impractical but because their ideas have already been implemented and have demonstrably failed. But they do have one big advantage over the libertarians: the general populace.
The general populace cares little for their civil liberties, at present. Further, the general populace can usually see no connection between their government-cossetted lives and the way in which this gives the state authority to interfere in every aspect of their lives—that the state owns us all is a theme I developed a few days ago. Further, the concept that the state might be working in the best interests of the state and not the populace is not an idea that has occurred to many of them just yet.
But this means that, in general, the liberal Left can only really argue for the status quo (albeit with the occasional piece of tinkering) which is hardly the most inspiring rallying cry. The libertarians, however, can fire up the anti-statist rhetoric and, whilst the vast majority of people haven't got it yet, it generally makes for far more interesting reading.
Further, despite the paranoid fantasies of those on the Left, there is no great, big right-wing conspiracy; we classical liberals aren't really ones for organising and corralling our supporters because it is precisely against our philosophy to do so—hence the trope that trying to get a libertarian party together would be like herding cats. Believe me, I've tried it (and that is before you take into account the fact that people have limited time and will use that time to push their personal blogs first).
So, am I worried about Liberal Conspiracy? No, for I don't believe that they have anything particularly original to say. And those that do will, I believe, continue to say those things on their blogs.
Will they have an impact on the media? Maybe, or at least that section of the media that is already sympathetic to them. Is this a problem? Only in that it will help to further entrench the status quo and this is not much of a problem: it was always going to take a massive force of will to mobilise people to look beyond their own comfortable, state-funded lives anyway. Liberal Conspiracy may raise the bar a tiny bit, but not in any significant way.
Because, fundamentally, the liberal Left still believe that the state can make all things right and they are, gradually, losing that argument. Indeed, I quoted V's speech above, but there is an earlier section which is also applicable to the people of this country, which explains why the liberal Left have dominated for so long.
You don't seem to want to face up to any real responsibility, or to be your own boss...
The fact is that this is precisely the attitude of the British populace today, and so they have been content to let the management run ever more of their lives. One day, it will have to stop and it will not be the liberal Left advancing the solutions.
And, in the meantime, since "right-wing loonies" are not welcome in the comments of this Liberal Conspiracy—like most conspiracy theorists, they far prefer to put their hands over their ears and sing than to hear any counter arguments—it will, by the look of it, provide a rich seam of earnest and contradictory articles to fisk and otherwise rip the piss out of.
Judging by some of the stuff that has already appeared, the Liberal Conspiracy looks to be like a particularly prolific Polly Toynbee, and you all know how much I love and respect her...
UPDATE: Timmy's slightly sceptical too.